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Meet and greet Friday aims to connect service providers and stem drugs and violence in South Boston

Posted by Patrick Rosso  July 12, 2012 11:19 AM

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As South Boston's community organizers work to improve communication among residents, one group is also working to connect the service providers.

Kay Walsh, the project director of South Boston CAN Reduce Underage Drinking, is holding an event Friday morning for service providers, the police, and city officials to help connect the groups and increase communication and resource sharing. Their goal: to stomp out the drugs and violence that the neighborhood has been battling.

“A lot of times people can’t put a face to the people providing the services and we want people to be able to talk to each other and work together,” said Walsh. “People are often times communicating electronically but the issues we are facing are too serious to just be discussing on the computer, we need to connect the providers."

The meet and greet will be held Friday, July 12, from 10:00 a.m. – 11:30 a.m. at the South Boston Action Center at 424 West Broadway.

“We wear many hats and work on all aspects of caring for our people bringing resources and skills. It may make our work easier if we met face to face and got to know one another,” said Walsh.

While many in the neighborhood will tell you the issues the community have been facing aren’t new, an increase in crime in the neighborhood has caused concern among residents. With four homicides just this year, many are saying enough is enough.

The Boston Police Department has said it is stepping up enforcement in the neighborhood and elected officials have been holding meetings to tackle the drugs that residents say are the root of the violence in the neighborhood.

Data released by BPD in early July show that the number of homicides, robberies, and assaults in South Boston have increased this year and as of July 1, four people have been killed in the neighborhood in 2012, compared with no homicides by this time last year.

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Email Patrick D. Rosso, patrick.d.rosso@gmail.com. Follow him @PDRosso, or friend him on Facebook.

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